By Alex Adi
An Extra-ordinary Session of the Mediation and Security Council (MSC) at Ministerial Level has taken place at the ECOWAS Commission headquarters in Abuja, Nigeria.
It was to discuss the recent decisions of three member states to withdraw from ECOWAS.
The Chairman of the MSC and Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Yusuf Maitama Tuggar, said the decision has generated considerable concern across the region and beyond.
On January 28, 2024, three military-led West African Nations announced their immediate withdrawal from ECOWAS, accusing the body of becoming a threat to its members.
The three countries also accused the regional body of failing to support their fight against terrorism and insecurity while imposing illegal, illegitimate, and inhumane sanctions.
At the Extraordinary Session of the Mediation and Security Council meeting, the President of the ECOWAS Commission said the unfolding events in the region are posing threats to peace and political stability in the West African community.
President Touray said it was time for ECOWAS to stay together now. He said there was no real basis for the reasons given by the countries for their withdrawal of their membership in ECOWAS and added that they did not reflect on the implications of this decision for their citizens.
The Chairman of the Council and Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Yusuf Maitama Tuggar, described the meeting as crucial “to devise solutions to the challenges presented by these decisions” but stressed that “in pursuit of solutions, ECOWAS must remain committed to the principles of democratic governance and safeguarding the right of the people to freely elect their leaders.
The extraordinary meeting of the Mediation and Security Council at Ministerial Level is made up of Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Defence from ECOWAS Member States.